Wednesday, September 12, 2012

And the Other Stuff

Of course storytelling isn't the only thing going on around here. It's still canning time. Applesauce, beets and salsa have been the recent additions to the cellar. I'm having to buy jars now, 6 dozen so far and the end not yet in sight. I swear I think they evaporate in the dishwater! Still to do: more apples and cider, the pears, more salsa and vegetable soup. Then I will be finished. This is the downhill slope for canning though, the major work is behind me and this is really more fun.

Then there is the cabin project. I need to get some photos posted, I know. My big computer has decided for some reason not to go online these days and it will be taking a vacation to the shop as soon as I finish taking all my documents and photos off of it. That's where the cabin photos are. But to update, Larry has about 75% or more of the logs in place. He'll need help getting three big ones up where they need to be, and then he will start on the roof. I had hoped we would have the roof on by the end of September but the current goal is the end of October. As long as it's done by winter, that's all we need. It can wait then until we have time and money at the same time (how rare is that!) to do the chinking and work on the interior.

I will be opening another booth in an antique mall in Spencer next week if all goes according to plan. I've been wanting to do this for a while but there hasn't been time and the new one in Marietta needed a lot of attention for a while. It's off and running very well now, and next week I can see some clear days so we'll focus on getting the Spencer booth in place. I am pleased with the way this little side business is going; another small income stream adds to our retirement income and that's a good thing.

I'm back to selling on eBay after taking the summer off for the most part. I'm doing some things a little differently, though, using more Buy It Now and free shipping. That means figuring pricing that includes enough to cover the shipping and still make a little money. It's been working very well--I listed 3 items Monday and all three are sold. I've cut down the listing fees by listing only when it's free and I am meeting eBay's new requirements for one day shipping and a return policy so I get a good reduction on their fees as well as a break on postage. It means staying on top of sales, which was so difficult in the summer when I was so busy. Now I'm home more it's doable. I've actually bought items at antique malls and resold them on eBay for a good profit! Sometimes dealers don't take time to look things up and that's when you can find a bargain--like the $10 candlesticks I sold for $100, the Heisey piece I bought for $3 and sold for 21, the pattern glass vase bought for $6 and sold for $30, etc. Those dealers probably made a profit when they sold to me so they're happy, I'm happy and my buyers are happy.

Even with all this busyness, we still have time for evenings by the firepit, junking and auction trips and visits with friends along with the routine household chores. When what you do is what you enjoy, it never feels like work.

Someone recently asked me, "so are you making as much money as you were when you were working?" The answer is heck no--we're living on about a third of my former income and yet we seem to be living as well now as we were then. Funny how that works, but I have always heard that people will manage on whatever money they have and it seems to be true. I suppose part of that is expectations; we didn't expect to take long trips or buy lots of new stuff (rarely do I buy anything new to tell the truth) but we didn't do those things when I was working anyway. Paying off our bills when I retired was a sound decision because now the biggest expenses we have are gasoline and health insurance, not mortgage and credit payments.

So that, as Paul Harvey used to say, is the rest of the story, with a few meandering thoughts along the way. Now,  back to work to list a few things on eBay and get ready to head down to my uncle's assisted living place to tell stories.



Copyright 2012 Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

9 comments:

hart said...

In the Washington Post was a story of a woman who bought a genuine Renoir at a flea market. It was in a $7 box of stuff. --Hart

warren said...

Holler when Larry needs help with the last of the logs...I can either be out of town or send Emily over to help!

Just kidding...holler though...

Granny Sue said...

Jane, one day maybe that magic will happen to me but so far it's just the ordinary good deals. But I can dream!

Granny Sue said...

Will do, Warren. He's ready now, so he may be calling on you soon.

Michelle said...

It all sounds divine to me. We think about retiring early, but don't think we will. Doing what you want, gardening, canning, etc...=bliss.

Nance said...

Warren made me laugh : ) I'm still hoping I'll find that next $100,000 painting at a garage sale. That would be the most fun ever!

Granny Sue said...

Nance, that kind of thing isn't likely to happen to me :) But I'm okay with the deals I do find.

Warren, it looks like Sunday might be the day for the logs if Larry can round up enough help.
Be sure to let Emily know!

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

Granny Sue -- I love retirement -- one can finally create their own free time. You and your husband sound like you are blissful doing the projects that you like. Continued success with your new business -- barbara

Nance said...

Sue, not likely to happen to me either but I keep hoping! I have found some good deals lately . . . and I'm not really a buyer (house is full already :( but if I were a buyer, that free shipping would catch my attention.

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